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Full text of "The Boston Kugel: Volume 6 Number 1 (Spring 1989)"



OThe 
O 

o 

O Society 




The Boston 




Kaypro, CP/M, Osborne 
Supporting MS-DOS and CP/M 



Vol.6 No. 1 $2.00 Spring 1989 






The New Boskug 
Bulletin Board 



■ 



by Jay Sage, Sysop 

The new Boskug BBS is now pretty well estab- 
lished, and we encourage all Boskug members (and 
others as well) to call in. In this first article in a 
series, I will try to cover those points that a first-time 
user needs to know to register and begin to use the 
board's facilities. 

As I write this, only one line is operational, but 
we expect to have the second access port ready by 
the time you are reading this. The only number 
most of you need to know is 617-965-7046. If that 
number is busy, the call will be directed automatical- 
ly to the second line. Callers with US Robotics 
Courier HST modems who want to connect only at 
9600 bps will need the second phone number; it will 
be posted on the board once our HST has been con- 
nected. 

When the board answers your call, it greets you 
with a sign-on message and then asks Do you want 
graphics (Enter) -no? If you are calling from an 



Boskug Presents 



June 13, 1989 6:30 

Ottoson Jr High School 
75 Acton Street, Arlington 



pm 



CP/M We hope^o have David Goodenough who 
will describe his public domain telecommuni- 
cations package QTERM. This program is 
only tentative at press time. 

MS-DOS A general meeting to decide where the 
MS-DOS subgroup should head in the next year. 
Some topics to discuss are meeting programs, 
public domain and bulletin board files, and 
newsletter articles. Present and prospective 
members are urged to put in their two cents' 
worth. 



MS-DOS machine with the ANSI.SYS driver or its 
equivalent active, then you can answer Y and press 
the return key; some system information will then be 






The number of the new 
Boskug BBS is 965-7046 

displayed using full-screen colored displays. Other- 
wise, answer N and press the return key, or just 
press the return key. 

Note that carriage returns are always needed to 
complete commands on this system, just as they are 
at your computer's operating system prompt. This 
prevents line noise from taking you on unintended 
and uncontrolled tours of the system! The default 

Continued on page 18 









Director's Letter 

Lee Lockwood 

The Phantom Kugel 

We apologize to our members for the long 
gap between issues of the Kugel. 

A users group (for those who are still un- 
aware) is run completely by volunteer labor. No 
job is more demanding or time-consuming than 
that of editing and producing the newsletter. In 
our case, this task falls mostly on the shoulders of 
one man, John Goldie, who assigns articles, 
badgers writers to send in what they promised 
they would, edits their copy, formats it, lays out 

Continued on page 19 






' 



A Boston Computer Society Publication 

Vol.6 No.1 Spring 1989 

EDITOR: John Goldie 
MS-DOS EDITOR: Michael Spampinato 
CP/M EDITOR: Hal Vogel 
TELECOMMUNICATIONS EDITOR: 

Open at the Moment 
ADVERTISING MGR.: Desperately needed 
ARM-TWISTING: Lee Lockwood 
CONTRIBUTORS: Cast of Thousands 

THE BOSTON KUGEL is published bimonthly by 
BOSKUG. Contents © 1989 by BOSKUG. BOSKUG 
combines the Kaypro, CP/M, and Osborne user 
groups and supports CP/M and MS-DOS operating 
systems. 

Permission for reproduction in whole or in part is 
given to other users' groups for non-profit use. All 
other reproduction is prohibited without the written 
permission of BOSKUG. 



MEMBERSHIP INFORMATION: BOSKUG is a volun- 
teer group of owners who have banded together to 
share information and solve problems related to 
their computers, accessories and software. 

BOSKUG meets on the second Tuesday of the 
month at the Greater Boston Educational Center 
(GBREC) located in the Ottoson Junior High School 
in Arlington Heights. Programs include lectures, 
panels, and open-ended discussions. Meeting 
notices are carried in the BCS UPDATE. 



If you live more than 75 miles away and wish merely 
to subscribe to The Kugei, send $15 for a year's sub- 
scription to BOSKUG, 27 Howland Rd., W. Newton, 
MA 02165. Foreign subscriptions are $20 US. 
Please send change of address information to the 
BCS; enclose your old mailing label. 

BOSKUG ACTIVISTS 

DIRECTOR: Lee Lockwood 965-6343 

CO-DIRECTOR: Bob Waters 894-5334 

CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER: 

Michael Bartell 628-8806 

TREASURER: Dan Chessman 734-5348 

UBRARY and PUBLIC DOMAIN PROGRAMS: 

(CP/M): Dave Veinot 641-0889 

(MS DOS): Michael Bartell 628-8806 

(Paper): George Fischer 774-4307 

Boskug Bulletin Board: 965-7046 

The Boston Kugel: John Goldie 545-0731 

BOSKUG PHONE RESOURCES 

CP/M TECHNICAL HELP: 

Art LeFort 326-8976 

David Veinot 641-0889 

WORD PROCESSING 

Perfect Writer Sarah Wernick 738-5820 

WordStar Alan Chapman (508) 877-6848 

ZCPR: Jay Sage 965-3552 

MSDOS TECHNICAL HELP: 

Michael Spampinato 923-9513 

WORD PROCESSING: 

Alan Chapman (508) 877-6848 

Karen Rockow 354-0124 

dBASE III: 

Mike Holmes (508) 993-0156 

Bob Waters 894-5334 

SPREADSHEETS: 

NatWeiner 769-3744 

KAYPRO TECH SUPPORT: 1-800-5-KAYPRO 

MICROPRO: 

WordStar 5.0 1-800-669-1250 

WordStar 2000.........1-800-669-1200 

WordStar 4.0 CP/M 415-499-5693 

Product updates 1-800-227-5609 

B.C.S. INFO LINE 367-6751 

B.C.S. BULLETIN BOARD 227-7986 

BOSKUG and The Boston Kugel value your com- 
ments, opinions, and contributions. Please write to 
us, or call us with your thoughts. 



Contents 



The New Boskug 
Bulletin Board 

by Jay Sage 

Director's Letter 

by Lee Lockwood 

Laptops and Luggables 

Karen Rockow looks at a 
few considerations to 
keep in mind when buying 
same 

On Board CP/M 

by Hal Vogel 

Boskug's New Audio 
Tape Service 

Some of Boskug meetings 
will be available for your lis- 
tening pleasure. Can MTV 
be already calling? 

Memory Wars 

Michael Spampinato's 
regular DOS Column 



6 



9 



10 



Greetings from the 
Highlands of Scotland. 12 

A Kaypro owner salvages 
a machine with a history 

Something Kind Of Wonder- 
ful: 
PC-Kwik Super Pak 13 

Michael Bartell reviews a 
product that improves his 
life 

PC-File 80 Version 9.1 15 

Willie Lockeretz compares 
this CP/M database to 
DataStar and Perfect Filer 

WS 5, the HP LaserJet II, and 
Printing an Envelope 17 

Yale Goldman triumphs 
over one of word 
processing's nasty little 
problems 

Classified Adverts 



11, 17 






We want to thank Yale Goldman for his help and forbearance 



Travel directions to BOSKUG 

We are located at the Greater Boston Regional Education Center 
(GBREC pronounced "GA-BREC!"), in the Ottoson Junior High 
School, 75 Acton St., Arlington, MA. If you have any questions, you 
may call Dave Keeler at GBREC, 641-4870.) 

By car 

From Rte 128r^ake VA, 2 EAST 3.5 miles to Park Ave. exit. At the 
end of the ramp, turn LEFT at light onto Park Ave; go 0.6 miles, turn 
RIGHT onto Appleton St. Take fifth RIGHT onto Acton St. Acton 
St. dead-ends at Ottoson. Once inside, cross lobby; GBREC is one- 
half flight down. 

From Storrow Drive: Follow Newton/Arlington signs to Rt. 2 WEST. 
Take Park Ave. exit, turn RIGHT onto Park Ave. Follow instructions 
above. 

Via MBTA 

From Harvard Sq: Take Bus #77 (ARLINGTON HEIGHTS) along 
Mass. Ave. Get off at Appleton St. (at St. James Catholic Church). 
Walk one block WEST on Appleton to Acton St. Walk LEFT on 
Acton to the Ottoson School (see above). 

From Alewife Station: Take Bus #84 (ARLMONT VILLAGE) along 
Rt. 2 West and Park Ave. north. Get off at Appleton St., walk one 
block EAST to Acton, follow above instructions. 



Page 2 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



Laptops and 
Luggables 

By Karen Rockow 

Buying a laptop can be a daunting ex- 
perience. The market has taken off in the last 
year or two (for reasons we'll discuss in a 
minute), and it has gone in several different 
directions at once. 

In many ways, laptops are the most interest- 
ing segment of the DOS market. Here, IBM's 
influence has been least felt. In fact, IBM has 
been notoriously unsuccessful, first with its port- 
able computer, later with its laptop. As a result, 
there has been great diversity of design. IBM 
wasn't around to dictate that a computer had to 
be a gray box with a monitor on top and a 
keyboard at the front. And because no single 
machine has achieved ascendancy, the laptop 
market is not yet flooded with low-cost Chinese 
clones. So far, there isn't anything to clone. 

What is a Laptop? 

For convenience, I've used the term "laptop" 
very loosely, lumping together a number of wide- 
ly different types of computers. All of these 
machines are designed to be carried and have 
some sort of built-in display. Some have hard 
disks. Some have one or two floppy drives. A 
few have no drives at all. They fall into four 
main classes: 

Notebook computers, like the old Radu7 
Shack Model 100 and its successors, are usually 
flat (though they may have small tilt-up screens 
like the Epson Geneva), the size of spiral 
notebooks and very lightweight (2 or 3 lbs.). 
Most of these are not MS-DOS machines. No 
one is building these any more, except Clive 
Sinclair, who introduced his new Z88 recently. 

Tilt-screen laptops with a "clamshell" con- 
figuration are the only true laptops, though most 
are too big and heavy for the human lap. Al- 
most all of these are MS-DOS machines. Most 
are battery powered. This is the most active 
design arena. They range from 4 to almost 20 
lbs. 

Lunchbox or toaster-shaped computers are 
"old technology," with the exception of the Com- 
paq and NEC Powermate portables. Weighing 
in around 20 lbs. and AC-powered, most of 
these use 5.25" drives. This is the only type of 
portable computer that has attracted the low- 
cost Chinese clone-makers in droves. So far. 

Sewing machine box computers were 
pioneered by Osborne late in 1985. Followed by 
the CP/M Kaypro and the MS-DOS Compaq, 
Corona, and Columbia, these machines all had 



crt monitors, 9 inches or smaller. They weighed 
from 28-40 lbs. Notice that this description is 
written in the past tense, although you can still 
get a low-cost MS DOS clone in an old Compaq- 
style case, if that's what you want. 

Came the Dawn 

The first clamshell laptop, the Data General 
One, was introduced at the end of 1985. It had 
one major flaw; the screen was unreadable. 
Only in the last year has there been a realization 
that laptops aren't just toys for reporters and stu- 
dents, two constituencies not known for the type 
of affluence that attracts big business. Suddenly, 
the computer manufacturers have awakened to 
the fact that these machines also appeal to a far 
more lucrative audience of executives, consult- 
ants, and anyone who goes out into the field and 
wants to tote a computer. In addition, the new 
crop of laptops can hold its own against all but 
the most powerful desktop machines. These in- 
centives have given the computer industry the 
kick in the pants that it needed. 

Several recent developments have been of 
tremendous importance in the metamorphosis 
of the laptop from little more than a portable 
electric typewriter to a powerful machine: 

Legitimization of the 3J5" drive by IBM: 
Until the PS/2s arrived on the scene, there was 
still uncertainty about the validity of the 3.5 tf disk 
in the MS-DOS world. Even now, most laptops 
still use the 720K disk rather than the 1.44 meg 
variety. 

New screen technology: if you can't read it, 
it's useless. This may seem basic, but no one 
bothered to tell Data General, Kaypro, or a host 
of other early laptop manufacturers. (Common 
sense has not been a hallmark of laptop develop- 
ment.) In fact, Apple is still sitting on the port- 
able Mac, waiting for the perfect screen to drop 
from heaven. The old LCD screens were almost 
impossible to read unless the letters were huge, 
as on the Model 100, which made a full 24 lines 
by 80 column display impossible. The next im- 
provement was the supertwist LCD screen. We 
now have backlit supertwist (generally blue, 
more recently "paper white") and orange/red 
gas plasma screens. Both are very readable in a 
variety of lighting situations. On the downside, 
they drain power. We're just beginning to see 
monochrome displays with VGA resolution 
(640x480) and some of the transportable clones 
have color monitors. Many laptops can be con- 
nected to external monitors. The next develop- 
ment will be the laptop color screen. 

Fast, cheap, low-power hard disks have 
made it possible to pack desktop power into a 
laptop. Until very recently, the only half-height 















The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 3 






hard disks around were 5.25" models that took 
too much space, weighed too much, drew too 
much power, and were slow. When Compaq 
came out with its 286 portable a few years back, 
its 20 meg hard disk had a random access time 
in excess of 80 ms. (The maximum acceptable 
access time for an AT hard disk is 40 ms.) 
Recently, many manufacturers have introduced 
3.5" hard disks in the 28 ms. range that draw as 
little as 1 watt. Prairietek has pioneered a 2.5" 
hard disk and IBM has a small drive on the 
drawing board. An added benefit of the smaller 
drives is that the need for shock mounting 
diminishes. 

Transferring Files From One Machine to 
Another 

It's easy to transfer files from one machine to 
another at your desk. How you do it depends on 
the type of laptop you have, as well as the 
operating systems you are using. In most cases, 
you will need a null modem, a cable (or a plug 
that fits on your regular serial cable) that lets 
you connect the serial ports of both machines. 

Model 100 

Disk 169 in the BOSKUG library tells you 
how to make a null modem cable to connect 
your CP/M Kaypro machine and your Model 
100 laptop. It also includes a program called 
FT.COM that runs on the Kaypro and lets you 
send and receive files. Mike Bartell wrote the 
doc file that leads you step by step through the 
procedure at both the Kaypro and MotteHQO 
ends. He also tells you how to deal with the N 
problem of unwanted carriage returns. 

MS-DOS 

If you are transferring files between MS-DOS 
machines, you have several options: 

1. You can install a 3.5" drive in your desktop 
machine, or purchase an external 5.25" drive for 
your laptop. 

2. The neatest solution is to use file transfer 
software such as LapLink or Brooklyn Bridge. 
(A public domain program called ZIP 1.22 writ- 
ten by Eric Meyer is available on the BOSKUG 
bbs.) Working with a null modem (included in 
some of the packages), these programs let you 
treat one machine as the host computer, the 
other as the remote computer, and transfer files 
at blinding speeds between them. You can also 
use these programs to transfer files between a 
desktop machine with a 5.25" drive and a PS/2 
with a 3.5" drive. 

Choosing a Laptop 

Many of the questions you should ask are the 
same as for buying any computer. Others are 
more specific. 



1. What will I use it for? If the machine will 
be used for taking notes, your needs are quite 
different than if you must run AUTOCAD or 
Microsoft Windows. 

Do I need an AT or can I use an XT-class 
machine? 

Will this be my primary or secondary 
machine? If it's a primary machine, you may 
want a better display and more storage. 

Do I need a DOS machine at all? Or can I 
use a Model 100 or Epson Geneva? If all you're 
doing is dumping short text files, the smaller, 
less expensive machine may be all you need. 

2. How portable must the computer be? 
Will I be carrying it a great deal? Or do I just 
want a machine I can close up and put in the 
closet when I need more desk space? You may 
be able to get along with a portable rather than 
a battery-operated laptop. 

If you need a lightweight DOS machine, there 
are only two options: the low-priced Toshiba 
T1000 (6.4 lbs.) and the high-priced NEC Ultra- 
Lite, which is two lbs. less. More are on the way. 

3. Do I need battery operation? The 
transportables are not battery operated, nor are 
some of the larger laptops. 

4. Do I need a hard disk? Many people 
think that hard disks have no place in laptops. 
But those who need to run desktop applications 
(databases, spreadsheets) for client demos will 
need hard disks. Manufacturers charge top dol- 
lar for these hard disks; on the whole, you can't 
get a stripped machine and install your own. 

5. How much can I spend? Any laptop will 
be more expensive than the comparable desktop 
machine. In most cases, given two laptops with 
equivalent features, the lighter of the two will 
cost more. Used machines tend to have poorer 
displays or slower hard disks. 






6. Do I need a super-readable screen? Willi 
be using an external monitor? One reason I 
haven't yet bought a laptop is that I want to be 
able to see both boldface and underlining in 
WordPerfect, and this isn't possible with most 
displays that emulate cga. 

7. Can I live with the keyboard that comes 
with the machine? If not, does it have a stand- 
ard plug that I can use for the keyboard of my 
choice? How important are these factors? Ob- 
viously, if you use the laptop for writing eight 
hours a day, it will be more important than if 
you use the machine only to read your electronic 
mail. Only the NEC Multispeed has function 












Page 4 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 






keys on the left, an important factor when work- 
ing with WordPerfect. Compaqs have tradition- 
ally come with short cords hard-wired into the 
machine, just to make life difficult. On the other 
hand, the lunchbox clones all seem to come with 
a standard keyboard plug, as do many laptops. 

8. Do I want to be able to use standard ex- 
pansion cards? If so, you will probably have to 
forget about battery operation and go with a 
portable. 

Other Items You May Need 

Is your bank account safe once you've pur- 
chased the laptop and any applications and file 
transfer software you need? Hardly. 

Your first problem will occur the moment 
you turn on the machine. Depending on your 
location, the screen that looked so beautifully 
readable at the computer store may now be 
something less than ideal. Chances are you'll 
spend a few frantic hours experimenting with 
lighting before learning how to position the lap- 
top for the best display. Particularly if you have 
a wide and narrow screen, you may still have 
trouble locating the cursor. Of the machines I 
know, only the Datavue Spark lets you change 
the cursor from blinking underline to a blinking 
box with a keystroke combination. There are, 
however, software solutions. 

If you happen to have WordPerfect 4.2 or 5.0, 
it includes a useful utility called cursor.com that 
lets you customize the cursor position and 
shape. It may or may not work with other ap- 
plications. You can also purchase Ken Skier's 
No-Squint program from SkiSoft. 

You may also decide that your laptop's blinks 
and beeps aren't quite assertive enough about 
telling you the condition of the battery. Another 
clever program, Battery Watch, from Traveling 
Software, uses a fuel gauge metaphor to tell you 
how much life is left in your batteries. 

The other problems that arise are more ex- 
pensive to solve, and how important they are hin- 
ges on how mobile you want your new laptop to 
be and your sense of esthetics. Do you want to 
carry around a printer that is ten times as large 
as the computer, or a modem that weighs almost 
as much as the laptop? For those who must take 
these peripherals along, Diconix has developed 
a line of nifty little battery-operated inkjet 
printers. Internal modems for most laptops are 
outrageously expensive (which may be another 
reason to purchase a portable that can use stand- 
ard expansion cards). You can, however, get a 
"pocket modem," a battery operated Hayes-com- 
patible modem the size of a pack of cigarettes. 
Most of these are 1200 baud. Migent, which 



pioneered pocket modems, is in grave financial 
difficulty right now; their model was selling for 
$65 at the last flea market I attended. The 
Touchbase Worldsport modem is available in a 
2400 baud model. Several other modem 
manufacturers have recently added pocket 
modems to their lines. 

What the Future Holds 

It's probable that more and more manufac- 
turers will adopt the type of RAM expansion 
card offered by the Toshiba T1000; the NEC 
UltraLite already has. The additional RAM is 
non-volatile (doesn't go pfft! when you turn off 
the machine) and can be set up to work like a 
very fast hard disk of limited capacity. The 
UltraLite also has gone back to the old ROM 
cartridge concept; instead of a cartridge, NEC is 
offering applications on ROM cards the size of 
credit cards. Compaq has just entered the lap- 
top field, IBM is poised to re-enter it, Zenith 
supposedly has a machine in the wings to com- 
pete with the NEC UltraLite, using more con- 
ventional technology. Hard disks are about to 
shrink in size again, and assorted manufacturers 
are working on floppy drives and credit card 
memory devices with increased capacity. 

So if you don't need a laptop desperately, 
wait. The best is yet to come. 

Karen Rockow is still waiting for the perfect lap- 
top. She used her Model 100 only once, to log 
onto computer bulletin boards from the hospital, 
and recommends it highly for this purpose. 






Classifed Advert 

Wanted 

MS-DOS compatible personal com- 
puter. We need a 640K machine with the 
following features: 

• 20-30 meg hard disk 

• one or two floppy drives 

• amber high resolution monitor 

• one parallel and one serial port. 
We also need a NLQ dot matrix printer. 
Please call Father Joachim Lally at 

(617) 426-7153 
or write to Holy Cross Cathedral, 75 
Union Park St., Boston, MA 02118 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 5 



CP/M 



On Board CP/M 

by Hal Vogel 

Through the WordStar Printer Patch Without 
Really Patching 

Life would be much simpler if we didn't have 
to patch printer drivers. But do it we must if 
only to prevent our computer screens from be- 
coming the modern equivalent of clay tablets. 

However, printer patching for WordStar ver- 
sion 4, can make you seriously reconsider clay as 
your media. Depending upon what you're trying 
to make your printer do, and MicroPro's printer 
driver, the process can be simple or daunting. 

Installing a printer driver is not much of a 
problem - WINSTALL and WSCHANGE 
take care of that. If the basic driver for your 
printer is adequate, you're in business. But if 
you have adventurous tastes or you want to use 
your printer as more than a typewriter, you'll 
probably have to do some fine tuning to the 
MicroPro-supplied printer driver. The process 
isn't as complex and frustrating as it used to be. 
You find the appropriate command codes in 
your printer manual, convert them to hex (if the 
manual hasn't already done so) and enter them 
in WS4 via WSCHANGE. Find that pertinent 
slot in one of the printer data menus and enter 
the code. 

This is much easier than it was in the Dark 
Ages of WS tinkering, when pioneer patchers 
sometimes first had to unearth program addres- 
ses, figure out how the code should be entered 
and then manually plug in the values using a 
program patcher. Some codes needed to begin 
with "count bytes" that told WS how many 
characters going to be entered at that address). 
WSCHANGE takes care of even this. 

Alternatives to patching WS4 

But if permanently patching WordStar isn't 
for you, there are other ways for directing WS4 
to access those specialty features of your printer 
and they're even easier. Not only do they 
provide an alternative to those who don't want 
to patch WS4, but they also allow masochists 
(who still patch the old fashion way) to make 
changes on-the-fly. The methods we'll discuss 
use dot commands, WS4's ^ P command, and 
sending escape codes directly to the printer. 

In most cases, you won't have to do any inter- 
nal program patching — however, there is no 
way of getting around knowing what codes your 



printer needs to perform certain functions you 
wish to access. These can be found in your 
printer manual. If you don't like entering hex 
code, there are choices that accept the com- 
mands in (nearly) plain English. 

Method #1 

This method is right out of the manual. You 
use a dot command to enter the same code you 
would patch under WSCHANGE. Instead of 
permanently writing it into WS4 (or its printer 
overlay), simply type it as a dot command 
anywhere in your text before that portion where 
it has to be used. Make sure the dot command 
begins in column #1 of its own line. 

What you are doing is temporarily patching 
up to four of the user definable printer com- 
mand strings. They are ~PE, ~PQ, ~ PR, and 
"* PW. If they haven't already been patched, 
they might print something if entered in your 
document, maybe one of the extra characters or 
symbols. Chances are, however, that they won't 
produce anything until you give them something 
to read. 

This method first tells WS4 in your document 
(in HEX code) what you want the commands to 
do with your printer. Then, in the document, 
you'll be showing WS4 exactly where (and for 
how long) you want it done. 

Let's say you want a more exciting type of em- 
phasis printing. Regular three-strike boldface 
doesn't quite achieve the effect you want under 
certain circumstances. JUKI 6100 (one of the 
printers that sometimes also wore a Kaypro 
label when bundled with some '84 series 
Kaypros) has a SHADOW printing feature that 
does a slight offset as it restamps each character 
three times. This produces a more dramatic 
boldface. Other printers also can achieve this ef- 
fect. JUKI 6100 turns it on with an ESC W. 
ESC & turns it off. The HEX code for ESC W 
is IB 57. ESC & in hex is IB 26. 

So at the top of your document (or before 
you want to use SHADOW printing) type the 
following dot commands: 

.XE1B57 
.XR1B26 

Of course, these would be flush left, with the 
DOT (period) of the dot command being in 
column one of that line. Nothing else may be on 
a line with these dot commands. These tell WS4 
that when it encounters * PE, it should direct 
the printer to do whatever ESC W means to it 
(SHADOW printing). The second dot com- 
mand tells it to convey an ESC & to the printer 
when it encounters a ^ PR in this document. If 
we had used XQ or XW, we would have been 



Page 6 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



giving meaning to *" PQ and ^ PW in this docu- 
ment. 

But only in this document. These dot com- 
mands will cause (in this case) * PE and * PR 
to react the same as if we had patched the 
program with this code via WSCHANGE or 
DDT, etc. However, this patch only works in 
the current document. The dot commands ex- 
pire when you enter another document. Save 
and reenter this document, and the patches 
again are in effect. Use them in the text as if 
they had been permanently patched into the 
program. This is how you would type it to turn 
SHADOW printing on and off for emphasis of 
"not" in the following example: 

Type 

This is ~ PEnot ~ PR the way to do it! 

It would appear like this on the screen: 
This is ~ Enot ~ R the way to do it! 

These can be cancelled and changed before 
you leave this document. You simply have to 
begin another line with another dot command 
that redefines * PE and * PR. Now all that fol- 
lows in this document will have their new mean- 
ing. This will be true even if ~ PE and ** PR 
already have been patched in the program. Any 
such dot commands will temporarily override 
whatever already is hard patched. 

There is another difference between patching 
printer commands this way and permanently 
patching them into the program. The dot com- 
mands are entered without a count byte. Just 
enter the COMMAND (e.g., IB 57). It would 
have been entered as 02 IB 57, if it were a per- 
manent program patch. 

Method #2 

Method #2 has two variants. The first of the 
two varieties employs a modification of method 
#1. It uses a very useful permanent or semi-per- 
manently patched (or designated) user 
definable command string. Choose one of the 
four empty user strings ( " PE, ~ PR, ~ PW, 
A PQ) and via WSCHANGE or DDT, etc., 
patch it to produce the ESCape command (IB). 
Of course, you will have to use a count byte. 
The full patch will read 01 IB. 

Now you can easily insert two-byte printer 
ESCape codes directly into your text without 
even having to declare them in a dot command. 
It is one of the neat (undocumented) features 
that WS even had in earlier editions. Remem- 
ber, ESC (with this method) already is patched 
in the program (let's say as ^ PE) to be 
produced from one of the four user definable 
strings. You simply are adding the next ACSII 



character of a printer escape code (NOT a hex 
code, in this case) to produce the desired effect. 

To enter our SHADOW printing example 
again (emphasizing the word "not"), type 

This is ~ EWnot ~ E& the way to do it! 

* PE would appear on your screen as simply 
~ E ( ~ PR would appear as ~ R, etc.). Patched 
as ESC, it tells WS that the next ASCII charac- 
ter (notice, there are no spaces between the 

* PE, W and the affected text) should be con- 
sidered as part of a printer command and not as 
a printable character in the text. Of course, 

* PE (patched to mean ESC) with & following 
is the command to turn off SHADOW printing. 

You can use this anywhere in any WS docu- 
ments to produce the effect of two-character 
ESCape codes (i.e., where the first charac- 
ter/byte is ESC). Notice again that we used 
regular ASCII characters following ~ PE (ESC) 
rather than translating them into hex code. 

Method 2a 

A variant of method #2 (call it #2a), does 
not require ESCape to be patched into the 
program. Remember, this also can be taken 
care of within the document using a dot com- 
mand. Of course, it isn't permanent and must 
be entered in each document that will need it. 

In this case, use a dot command that defines 
the ESC key (we still are using ~ PE) at the top 
or anywhere preceding where it will be used as 
.XE IB (NO count byte, of course). You'll 
recognize this as the method #1 technique. 

Now wherever you follow * PE with a charac- 
ter that means something to the printer, it will 
produce that effect when it prints out that docu- 
ment. Remember, no spaces separate the con- 
trol string, additional print command (in ASCII) 
and the text they affect. 

Method #2a on the screen would look the 
same as what we had for method 2. The only dif- 
ference is that WS is getting the meaning of 
** PE from wherever you put the dot command 
and not from a patch inside the program. 

Method #3 

Method #3 reuses a feature of WS that we al- 
ready use for printer effects. It's the ^PofWS 
that tells the program that the next ASCII 
character is part of a printer command and not 
a printable character (e.g., * PB for boldface 
and * PS for underlining). We will precede 
printer escape codes (in ASCII characters) with 
a ^ P, leaving no spaces between the code and 
text, just as we did when employing a patched 
ESC key for this same purpose. 

Of course, be careful that your * P command 
does not duplicate an existing ** P command al- 



The Boston Kugei 



Spring 1989 



Page 7 



ready recognized by WS. If it does, WS will 
yield the effect it already recognizes and dis- 
regard yours. So our continuing example would 
be typed in the text as: 

This is ~ PWnot ~ P& the way to do it! 

Typing CONTROL-P, followed by typing the 
ESCape key (don't type "ESC." Type the KEY 
that is identified with the lettering "ESC) and 
the last part of the ASCII code identifier would 
appear like this on the screen: 

This is ~ [Wnot ~ [& the way to do it! 

The screen display won't show the ^ P. 
ESCape will appear first in the command as ^ [. 
Of course, the W is the end of the command 
(ESC W) that produces SHADOW printing on 
our JUKI 6100. The command ending with the 
ampersand, of course, turns it off. 

Type ~ P using the CONTROL key and the 
letter P. Enter ESCape by typing the ESCape 
key in the upper left portion of the keyboard 
(don't type the control key and a left bracket 
{[}, even though that is what appears on the 
screen). And don't forget, no spaces between 
the commands and the text they influence. 

Method #3 is not permanent. Its commands 
expire when you turn them off in the document 
and they won't transfer to another document un- 
less you write them into this other text file. But 
once this file is saved, they are PERMANENT 
in that document ~ just as if they had been 
patched into the program. 

Methods vs Methods 

Why would anyone resort to method #2, if 
deciding between it and method #3? Method 
#3 is simpler and has a familiar usage. Unfor- 
tunately, WS already has monopolized many of 
the ^ P pairs. So this limits what we can do with 
method #3. Method #2 gives us much more 
utility. 

Here we have three alternative methods for 
accessing more of your printer's features 
without having to fully patch the WS program. 
And even if you do patch the program for the 
features you wish to access, these methods are 
handy for altering any of your existing patches 
(or tasking other unpatched printer capabilities) 
on-the-fly. 

WordStar33 Redux 

Several readers have noticed mention in this 
column to the golden era of WORDSTAR 
patching. They remind us that not everyone 
today benefited then from a patched copy of 
WS3.3. Some came to CP/M after the heyday of 
3.3's reincarnation. There also are others who 
just may have missed all this 3.3 refinishing when 



t 



it was going on or who were apprehensive about 
climbing into Wordstar to splice its genes. 

There are several text files on electronic 
boards that contain most of the known WS3.3 
memory addresses for patching. Some even ex- 
plain how their values may be adjusted. 
However, this wouldn't help those who want the 
operation, but don't want to be the surgeon. 

Hopefully, WS33PAT.LBR (now on the BOS- 
KUG files board) will resolve both these needs. 
It contains three files that have many of the clas- 
sic WS3.3 patches for greatly enhancing this 
program's capability and ease of operation. 
These are SUBMIT files that (following the in- 
structions in their .doc files) can be made to 
automatically patch the necessary program files 
(WS.COM and its overlay files). 

WSPATCH.SUB is the basic patching file. It 
enables auto-logging to drive B: on startup, 
fetching WORD + on B: and having it called 
from within the WS program, skipping over the 
opening menu and advertisement to speed star- 
tup, extended tabs, improved screen perfor- 
mance - and a host of other features. 
WSMAJ.SUB goes a bit further to adjust some 
settings for 12-pitch printing. It also provides an 
ability for improved (modified) proportional 
spacing output from the standard 12-pitch 
printwheel. 

The last file (WSPP.SUB) assumes use of a 
Roman PS printwheel for proportional spacing 
output. It further modifies parts of the program 
to permit better effects when attempting propor- 
tional spacing via WS3.3. 

Any of the .SUB files can be entered in the 
NON-document mode of Wordstar for examina- 
tion and modification. Type N instead of D 
when naming the file to enter (of course, you 
also can enter these via the document mode - if 
you wish to corrupt them). 

Place a semi-colon (;) in front of any code 
you don't want to modify your program. 
EX14a.COM (included in the library file) will 
disregard those lines. If your printer doesn't use 
the Diablo command set, substitute your 
printer's code for the ones I have placed in the 
user-definable locations. Change these also, if 
you want the user-definable triggers to com- 
mand something other than what I have indi- 
cated. 

The various documentation (.DOC) files ex- 
plain what will result after running each SUB- 
MIT file. Reading the pertinent .SUB file will 
further show how this is to be done within the 
program. Remember not to enter any .SUB 
files in the document mode of WORDSTAR. 

If you just want to run the basic patching 
program without any changes, you'll need three 



Page 8 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



files from WS33PAT.LBR, one from your CP/M 
disk (DDT.COM) and the contents of your 
WS3.3 master disk. Extract WSPATCH.SUB, 
WSFAST16.HEX and EX14a.COM from 
WS33PAT.LBR (using DELBR11.COM, 
LU.COM or NULU.COM). With this disk in 
drive A:, go to your CP/M master disk and copy 
its DDT.COM from drive B: to your disk in 
drive A:. Finally, after removing the CP/M 
program disk, place a working copy of the 
WS3.3 master disk in drive B:. 

Now with the patching programs and files in 
drive A: and your WORDSTAR 3.3 files in B:, 
log onto A: and type: 

EX14WSPATCH <CR> 

There is no need to tell it what programs to 
patch or where they are. The submit file takes 
care of all that. 



You'll see the operation stream by on the 
screen. Don't do anything else until it is 
finished. There will be a message when it's 
done. It also will stop doing what it just was 
doing. At that point type a control-C ( ^ C). 
You're programs now are patched. Enjoy them. 

Two further remarks: These SUBMIT files 
are not designed for running under the DOS- 
convention version of DDTZ (DDTZM). Of 
course, they can run under DDTZM, but must 
be modified first to account for its differences. 
And, of course, these patches apply ONLY to 
WS3.3. Those instructions that also would func- 
tion under WS3.0 would need adjustment of 
their memory addresses for proper insertion in 
that program. 



Boskug's New Audio 
Tape Service 

GO To Meetings - Even If You're Too Far Gone 

If you are unable to attend Boskug's monthly 
meetings, you can still benefit from the CP/M 
presentations. Since Jay Sage has been record- 
ing them, you can experience the CP/M portions 
of the meetings in living audio. It has not been 
without personal sacrifice. Last month it cost 
him his tape recorder. Undaunted, he got 
another cassette player and is back in business 
with this past month's CP/M presentation. 

If you would like to listen to the tapes of the 
meetings, partake of breathtakingly technical 
tricks and tips, become bedazzled by dashing 
repartee, try borrowing -a meeting tape from the 
Boskug Audio Tape Library. The rules are 
simple. 

1. Send a self-addressed, adequately pre- 
stamped mailer sufficient to accept the safe 
return of a normal cassette audio tape, to: 

Hal Vogel 
Box 456 
Rancocas, N J 08073 

Ensure that appropriate packing material ac- 
companies each self-addressed mailer. 

2. You will be sent the copy of the tape made 
at the meeting's CP/M presentation by Jay (or 
the joint CP/M/MSDOS presentation, when 
there is one). It may be retained for no more 
than THREE days after receipt, after which it 
MUST be returned to the above address. 
PLEASE remember to rewind the tape after 
having listened to it. 



3. Each requester will be sent the same tape, 
so it is essential that recipients abide by the time 
constraints. Don't request the tape if you plan to 
keep it for more than three days. It won't expire. 
Ask for it when you have the time to meet the 
turn-around period's conditions. 

4. You may make a copy for your listening 
purposes of the tape you receive. However, it 
may not be further copied or distributed without 
permission of the tape librarian (Hal Vogel). 
This is to protect the rights of the presenters and 
BOSKUG's right of membership. 

What about getting copies to have and to 
hold? 

In order for us to send out copies of meeting 
tapes that you can keep, we need someone to do 
the duplication work. If someone out there with 
access to a high-speed cassette audio tape 
reproduction facility is willing to help out, please 
let us know. The way we envision it, we provide 
copies of the meeting tapes for a reasonable 
period of time after each meeting's presentation. 
Members who want tapes would send us a blank 
tape along with return postage. We would put a 
copy of the meeting on the tape and send it back. 
One copy of the tape would be kept in the library 
for lending and archival purposes. 

Do we have a volunteer who could make mul- 
tiple copies? How about a volunteer who could 
make a single copy of the master tape? After all, 
we don't want to send out the master tape and 
my facilities for copying tapes are pretty limited. 

I look forward to hearing comments about 
this service and especially to hearing from 
anyone who might be able to help with the copy- 
ing. 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 9 



MS-DOS 



Memory Wars 

A Long Time Ago in a Processor Far Far Away 

by Michael Spampinato 

Even though expanded and extended 
memory have been with us for a few years, the 
differences between extended, expanded, and 
enhanced expanded memory continue to create 
confusion. 

Extended Memory Extended memory is only 
available on 80286/80386 systems. The 8088, 
8086, and 80186 chips do not recognize ex- 
tended memory, because extended memory is a 
function of the 80286/386 processors. In "native 
mode" these chips act like a high-speed 8088, 
running standard DOS applications at speeds an 
average of 3 - 15 times faster than an 8088. 
RAM is still limited to 640K. In "protected 
mode" these chips are capable of multi-tasking 
and recognizing multi-megabytes of RAM. An 
operating system like OS/2 that addresses the 
protected mode of the 286/386 family is re- 
quired to break the 640K DOS barrier. If you 
have 8 megs of extended memory under a 
protected mode operating system, your com- 
puter will have 8 megs of directly addressable 
RAM. Standard DOS applications, however, 
will not run on such an operating system. OS/2 
has provided a "DOS compatibility window" in 
which a single DOS application can be run 
under 640K of RAM. 

Under DOS, extended memory is usually 
used for a RAM disk with a device driver similar 
to the VDISK.SYS that comes with DOS. A few 
disk cache and print spooling programs also can 
utilize extended memory, but most only recog- 
nize expanded memory. Because extended 
memory has much less versatility than expanded 
memory, software is being released that converts 
extended memory to expanded memory. 

Extended memory begins at lmb and goes up 
from there. Because of this, you have to be care- 
ful when selecting a 286/386 motherboard. 
Some motherboard designs containing lmb of 
memory allow you to configure that lmb as 
either 512K conventional and 512K extended, or 
640K conventional and OK extended. The 
remaining 384K is wasted. Other designs let you 
divide the same lmb of RAM as 640K conven- 
tional memory and 384K extended memory. 

Expanded Memory 

Expanded memory was developed to break 
the 640K barrier of DOS. The 8088, 286, and 
386 chips can address a maximum of lmb of 



RAM directly when running under DOS. This 
lmb is broken down as follows: 

• 256K for ROM BIOS, extended video 
modes such as EGA, and (on PC/XT 
only) Hard Disk 128K for Video memory 

• 128K for video memory. 

• 640K for Conventional RAM 

Bank Switching 

Expanded memory utilizes a technique called 
"bank switching." Bank switching allows a chip 
to access more memory than ordinarily possible 
by storing chunks of information in sections 
("banks") of the extra memory. As necessary, 
unneeded data is "switched out" of conventional 
memory and needed data held in the extra 
memory is "switched in" to conventional 
memory, where it is manipulated as usual. Bank 
switching was used by CP/M, Apple II and other 
systems long before the IBM-PC made its ap- 
pearance. 

LIM Expanded Memory 

Engineers at Lotus, Intel, and Microsoft col- 
laborated to develop a bank switching system 
for the IBM-PC. They called this system "ex- 
panded memory". Known as EMS (for Ex- 
panded Memory Specification) or LIM (Lotus, 
Intel, Microsoft), this expanded memory first al- 
lowed the PC to exceed 640K of RAM. LIM ex- 
panded memory is switched into conventional 
memory by a window consisting of four 16K seg- 
ments. Because of the limitations of a 64K win- 
dow, programs could not run in expanded 
memory, but data could be stored there. A 
spreadsheet like Lotus 1-2-3 could create huge 
spreadsheets by storing much of it's data in ex- 
panded memory. Databases and word proces- 
sors also began taking advantage of expanded 
memory to allow larger documents or databases 
to be held in memory, allowing faster data ac- 
cess and manipulation. The LIM specification 
could recognize up to 8mb of expanded memory. 

Enhanced Expanded Memory 

Enhanced Expanded Memory Specification 
(EEMS), developed by Quadram/AST/Ashton- 
Tate, increased the size of the switching window 
so programs could actually run in the expanded 
memory. This potential for multi-tasking was, 
for a long while, only utilized by one program 
(Desqview by Quarterdeck) EEMS could ad- 
dress up to 16mb of expanded memory. 

LIM 4.0 

The new expanded memory specification, 
LIM 4.0, was the result of a joint effort by both 
the EMS and EEMS developers. LIM 4.0 al- 



Page 10 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



lows programs to run in the expanded memory, 
like EEMS. Programs like Desqview and MS- 
Windows will recognize LIM 4.0 and allow 
multi-tasking. 

LIM 4.0 allows enhancements beyond 
EEMS. DMA support allows multi-tasking 
programs to be switched in and out of activity 
before DMA communications are completed. 
The LIM 4.0 memory will continue to handle 
DMA communications when a program has 
been switched to the background in a multi-task- 
ing session. Further, integrated software pack- 
ages can be written to share the same data set, 
allowing faster handling of data and more effi- 
cient use of available memory. 

Hardware 

Most board manufacturers such as AST, 
Quadram, Intel, STB, Boca Research, ADI etc. 
manufacture expanded memory boards. These 
boards usually provide 1.5-2mb of memory. 
Many can use either 64K or 256K chips (not 
mixed). Keep in mind that a fully populated 
2mb expanded memory board will only yield 
512K when 64K chips are used. If you want to 
go beyond the 2mb of expanded memory these 
boards usually provide, several boards may be in- 
stalled in one computer. However, multiple 
boards should be of the same make. 

Boards designed for pre-4.0 specifications 
can use 4.0 software but will not allow multi-task- 
ing. The techniques required to allow programs 
to run in expanded memory are hardware rather 
than software dependent. For example, an 
original Intel Aboveboard running with LIM 4.0 
will not be recognized by Desqview. However, 
an EEMS board under LIM 4.0 will have full 4.0 
capabilities. 

Expanded Memory Management Software 

In order for the computer to recognize and 
use expanded memory, a software driver is re- 
quired. This driver is placed in the CON- 
FIG.SYS file. For example: 

DEVICE = EMS.SYS 

Different manufacturers always provide their 
own memory management software with the ex- 
panded memory board. 

Special LIM 4.0 Programs 

Some programs are emerging that actually 
run in Expanded memory. This is an ideal en- 
vironment for TSR programs. TSR (Terminate 
and Stay Resident) programs, commonly known 
as memory-resident programs, are loaded into 
the computer's conventional RAM. Hitting a 
series of keys will pop this program up over 
whatever program you're currently using. 






Borland's Sidekick is considered by many to be 
the the program responsible for popularizing 
TSRs. Unfortunately, Sidekick can take up al- 
most 100K of RAM when all of its modules are 
loaded. If you use Sidekick with other TSR 
programs, you can easily lose over half of your 
available memory before ever loading a stand- 
ard application. A new version, Sidekick Plus, is 
designed to place most of itself into 4.0 ex- 
panded memory, leaving a small "kernal" in con- 
ventional memory through which the main 
program is accessed. More important are TSR 
managers. The principle is simple. Determine 
how much memory your largest TSR requires 
and set that much conventional memory aside. 
The TSR manager program will place all of your 
TSRs into 4.0 expanded memory. When you call 
up a TSR, it runs in the conventional memory 
you've set aside. Hence, you could easily have 
lmb of TSR programs residing in expanded 
memory with only a 60 or 70K window reserved 
from conventional memory (plus a few K for the 
TSR manager). 

Coming Next issue 

A look at the GEM operating environment, 
Gem graphics packages, GoScript (a program 
that prodcues PostScript on non-PostScript 
printers, and the HP Deskjet printer. 



Classified Adverts 






For Sale 

Kaypro 2 with single sided-drives. B:drive 
needs repair. WordStar 4.0, Checks & Balan- 
ces. Best offer (617) 738-4641. 

Classified Advertising Policy 

If you are a Boston Computer Society mem- 
ber, or a Boskug member, you get to run your 
classified advertisements for free. Results are 
not guaranteed, but what the heck. 

If you have something of value for which you 
are seeking a new home, or are merely trying 
to eke out the last few bucks from your once- 
upon-a-time-but-no-longer state of the art 
machines, send your ad copy to: 

John Goldie, editor 
158 Hollett Street 
Scituate, MA 02066 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 1 1 



Greetings from the 
Highlands of 
Scotland 

By Colin Walker 

My name is Colin Walker and I have recently 
become the proud owner of a Kaypro 2 com- 
puter. This machine has, what may be to you, 
quite an interesting history and if you have the 
time I'll tell you what I can. 

This unit found its self travelling to North 
Africa in the company of two missionary 
teachers, whom I believe used it to translate 
bible passages into several different dialects for 
the natives. It was then bought by another 
teacher and brought to the U.K. where it served 
for several years, mostly again as a wordproces- 
sor. Then it got sick. 

The owner took it to several computer 
dealers but having never seen a Kaypro they 
shook their heads and told him all sorts of little 
stories like, "both your disk drive heads have 
gone, sir" or "it's probably your pio chip, 
American you know, can't get 'em over here, 
you see." During this period one of these 
people managed to sell him a Z2 Buzz Bomb 
Mk IV with 300 Megabyte SuperTurbo Disc 
Drive and Coffee Maker! 

The Kaypro gathered dust. 

One Friday night I received a phone call from 
a friend at Drumnadochit, home of the Loch 
Ness Monster. Saturday found myself, Jimmy 
the Gnome (he's another story on his own) and 
a school teacher who Jim had promised to take 
fishing, in a boat in the middle of Loch Ness. 
The teacher's name was Bill Frances and he had 
recently moved to Scotland after returning from 
North Africa (Things Start to Fit). Anyway, we 
had plenty of time to talk as the monster didn't 
turn up and neither did any fish. 

I am, by trade, an electronics tech working on 
renal dialysis equipment in the local hospital 
and so when Bill proudly told me of his new 
Buzz Bomb etc. And I was mildly interested 
when he told me he was about to throw an 'old' 
one away my ears pricked up rather sharply. 
"Don't do that I said, give it to me and I'll strip it 
for parts. 

So I now had the old computer with two 
damaged heads, one blown microprocessor, 
none of which I could get in this country. (This 
was rubbish of course.) I put it on the work 
bench and got ready to take it apart. I thought 
I'd just have a quick look at it. 

Power on. OK 

Drive A dead. 



I changed over the drives. 

Drive A running. 

Disc in. 

Bingo. 

One Kaypro alive but still sick. 

Twenty minutes checking the faulty drive 
turned up a failed power transistor on the motor 
drive board. Thirty minutes total time equals 
one very healthy Kaypro 2. So now I have a very 
good computer. I then contacted a friend in the 
USA to see if there were any groups like yoursel- 
ves or any places where I may have been able to 
acquire software. 

I have at the moment several pieces of 
Kaypro software but also some of it is damaged 
quite badly. Several utilities on the system disc 
are faulty. My Perfect Filer disc must have been 
in one of the missionaries' pocket when the na- 
tives started to eat him, as it appears to have 
teeth marks in it. 

My friend Wally Andrews is now over here 
visiting other friends and he was good enough to 
contact yourselves and supply me with your info 
sheet. Now for the Nitty Gritty, as we say over 
here. Is it possible to obtain a list of software 
available for my Kaypro 2 with prices, postage, 
etc. especially for a Perfect Filer disc and a sys- 
tem disc? Finally is it possible for me to join 
your user group as I have been unable to un- 
cover one here? 



C For CP/M 

The BDS C Compiler v1.6 

The original, fast CP/M-80 C language 
development system is now available 
once again directly from BD Software! 

. Over 700K of materials, including full 
sources for: all libraries, runtime pkg, 
RED integrated editor, CDB source-level 
debugger, CMODEM program, utilities 

. Ideal for most ROM-based applications 

. Made to run fast on floppy-only systems 

. Many P.D. applications available (CUG) 

. Fully supported by author Leor Zolman 

Now only $90 per copy! 

BD Software 

P.O. Box 2368 

Cambridge, Ma. 02138 

(617) 576-3828 

Free UPS 2nd-day-air delivery for pre-paid orders. C.O.D., MC, 
VISA orders accepted. Please specify a soft-sectored disk format! 




Page 12 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



MS-DOS 



Something Kind Of 
Wonderful: 
PC-Kwik Super Pak 

by Michael Bartell 

PC-Kwik Power Pak lists for $129.95 
Multisoft Corporation 
15100 SWKoll Parkway 
Suite L, Beaverton, OR 97006 
8001288-KWIK (800/234-5945) 

Multisoft's PC-Kwik Super Pak consists of a 
set of dynamic DOS enhancements including a 
disk accelerator/cache, a keyboard accelerator, 
a screen accelerator, a print spooler, and a 
RAM disk. The package is dynamic because the 
utilities are linked to the disk cache for optimum 
performance of operational speed, conventional 
memory size usage, and flexible set-up 
parameters. 

Background to DOS enhancement utilities 

There is a variety of commercial, public 
domain, and shareware software available for en- 
hancing the performance of DOS computers. 
These resident programs load into the 640K of 
conventional RAM memory before the execu- 
tion of application programs such as word 
processors and spreadsheets. Let's take a look 
at the different ways to enhance performance. 

Disk accelerators/caches 

Disk accelerators (or disk caches) enhance 
the performance of reading information from 
diskettes and hard drives. The cache stores 
copies of recently used disk sectors in random 
access memory (RAM), effectively reducing the 
number of times applications physically access 
the disk. By reducing the number of disk acces- 
ses, the application runs faster than it normally 
would because more of the application is now 
run from RAM rather than the physical disk. 

Keyboard accelerators 

Keyboard accelerators speed up the charac- 
ter per second (cps) rate at which the cursor 
moves around a word processing document or 
spreadsheet. The keyboard accelerator also in- 
crease the responsiveness of cursor keys by 
reducing the delay time between when a charac- 
ter is typed and when subsequent characters 
start repeating. In some keyboard accelerators 
these repeat functions can be set to accelerate 
gradually before reaching maximum speed. 



Screen accelerators 

Screen accelerators speed up the output of 
text to the video screen. They eliminate the flick- 
ering screen problems found in some monitors. 
Some screen accelerators include a scroll-back 
feature which allows for the review of informa- 
tion which has already scrolled off the screen. 

Print spoolers 

Print spoolers intercept data being sent to the 
printer and copy it to RAM memory or to the 
hard disk before sending it to the printer. When 
the data has been saved to memory or disk, the 
print spooler runs in the background, returning 
control to an application while the data is being 
printed. 

RAM disks 

RAM disks use available RAM memory in a 
computer to simulate a physical disk drive. Files 
residing in memory can be accessed much faster 
than those on a physical disk drive. The RAM 
disk, in effect, becomes an additional drive in 
the computer. 

These utilities often take advantage of ex- 
tended and expanded memory. If the mother- 
board of a DOS computer is populated by more 
than 640K of memory chips, the additional 
memory chips can be accessed as extended 
memory. If a memory board is added to one of 
the available slots in the computer's bus, it can 
often be addressed as expanded memory. Disk 
caches, print spoolers, and RAM disks should 
be run whenever possible in extended or ex- 
panded memory in order to leave as much of the 
640K conventional memory available for the ap- 
plication program to run in. This is especially 
true for memory hungry applications such as 
desk top publishing. 

MS-DOS and PC-DOS include generic 
programs to improve performance. Increasing 
the number of buffers available, for example, 
operates like a small disk cache. The generic 
"vdisk.sys" can be run to create a "virtual" 
RAM disk in expanded memory. A number of 
companies offer software products to accelerate 
screen writes, such as Mace's Vscreen, and to 
improve the performance of the keyboard, such 
as Cruise Control. When an expanded memory 
board is added, generic disk caches, RAM 
disks, and print spoolers are often provided by 
the manufacturer. AST includes the Super Pak 
software with its boards. 

It is easy to get used to the programs one has 
at their disposal. It seems apparent that generic 
programs included with hardware should op- 
timize the use of that hardware. This is not 
necessarily so. Problems can emerge: applica- 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 13 



tions such as Ventura Publisher need more con- 
ventional memory to run in than is available 
when TSR (resident) DOS enhancements are 
loaded into this now precious memory alloca- 
tion; graphics are not properly handled by the 
print spooler with programs like Harvard 
Graphics and PC-Paint, tying up the computer 
by forcing a return to dedicated printing from 
the application software itself. Fortunately new 
software packages emerge which solve difficul- 
ties such as these. 

Multisoft's PC-Kwik Power Pak 

PC-Kwik Power Pak is an exciting new 
software package available from Multisoft. The 
Power Pak consists of a disk accelerator/cache, 
a keyboard accelerator, a screen accelerator, a 
print spooler, and a RAM disk. At the center of 
Power Pak is Super PC-Kwik, the disk cache 
program, which can address from 64K to 16 
megabytes of RAM memory. This impressive 
disk accelerator shares its cache memory buffer 
with the associated screen accelerator, print 
spooler, and RAM disk programs. This elegant 
feature enables associated programs to borrow 
memory from the cache as needed, and to 
return memory to the cache at other times. 

Various parameters such as cache size and 
the placement of the cache into either conven- 
tional, extended, or expanded memory are easily 
set when loading Super PC-Kwik. For example, 

D:SUPERPCK/A+ /S:1024 <cr> 

loads Super PC-Kwik from the D: drive to ex- 
panded memory, and specifies a cache size of 
1024K bytes. The program can be disabled or 
uninstalled by entering 

D:SUPERPCK/D 



or 



D:SUPERPCK/U 



respectively. 

Parameters for the keyboard accelerator, 
screen accelerator, print spooler, and RAM disk 
can be set prior to installation in a manner 
similar to that of Super PC-Kwik. Due to the 
flexibility of these programs, they function flaw- 
lessly on a variety of computers which use dif- 
ferent storage devices (disk drives, hard drives, 
and Bernoulli drives), different screen displays 
(Hercules, CGA, EGA, and VGA), and dif- 
ferent types of memory (conventional, extended, 
and expanded.) 

Another advantage of the programs' 
flexibility is their ability to be set up either to 
fully optimize speed settings or to significantly 
increase performance in a truncated form which 
saves more conventional memory for running ap- 
plications. This flexibility is especially useful 



when running a memory hungry application 
such as a desk top publishing program. With PC- 
Kwik installed in a truncated form the applica- 
tion will quite probably fit into memory and 
operate at an accelerated speed. 

The PC-Kwik programs and special 
parameters can be automatically loaded when 
booting the computer if they are included in the 
config.sys and autoexec.bat files. A public 
domain program named "Reconfig" is useful 
when running PC-Kwik with different applica- 
tions. Reconfig allows for multiple config.sys 
and autoexec.bat files. Thus you can have PC- 
Kwik set-up in one manner for use with regular 
applications and another manner for use with 
specific applications such as desk top publishing. 

One cautionary note, however: be sure to dis- 
able PC-Kwik before using Reconfig to reboot 
your computer to another configuration. If you 
do not do so, you may find that the autoexec.bat 
file does not load properly. To disable PC-Kwik 
I altered POWEROFF.BAT, a batch file in- 
cluded with PC-Kwik, so that it reads: 

PCKSPL /D 
PCKKEY /D 
PCKSCRN /D 
SUPERPCK /D 

The /D parameter disables the utilities and al- 
lows Reconfig to operate properly. 

While the PC-Kwik programs can be disabled 
at any time, they can only be removed if they are 
the last transient programs to be loaded into 
memory. However, if you use a TSR utility such 
as PopDrop or Respro to manage other TSRs it 
is likely you will want to load these transient 
programs after PC-Kwik. (Multisoft warns 
against removing PC-Kwik programs with any- 
thing but the uninstall /U command.) So again, if 
you are going to reboot to another system con- 
figuration, first disable the PC-Kwik programs 
with the /D option. 

It is not always necessary to reboot the com- 
puter to reset certain PC-Kwik parameters. Cur- 
rent settings for the utilities can be reviewed 
with a /P command, help can be acquired with a 
/? command and then modified with other / 
commands. The print spooler and the screen 
scroll-back programs include pop-up menus trig- 
gered by hot keys. These hot keys can be reset to 
other key combinations if the default keys con- 
flict with other TSR programs. (I did have to 
redefine the print spooler hot keys for them to 
work on my system.) 

Installation and Support 

If any of the special configurations men- 
tioned above seem overly complex, have no fear. 



- 



Page 14 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



PC-Kwik is a very simple program to install. The 
single 5 1/4" 360K program diskette (also avail- 
able on 3 1/2" diskette) contains an automatic in- 
stallation program. PC-Kwik also determines 
automatically which of several configuration 
modules should be accessed when the programs 
are installed. Three manuals are included with 
PC-Kwik Power Pak. They are well organized, 
clearly written, and include a thorough index. 
They are designed in a manner which novice 
users can follow simple examples while ex- 
perienced users can scan advanced options. 



Telephone support is quick and friendly. 
The support number is 503/644-5644. The Super 
PC-Kwik disk cache, which was awarded 
"Editors Choice" by PC Magazine in the 
February 14, 1989 issue (vol. 8, no. 3) can be pur- 
chased alone for $79.95. A reduced version of 
the program is part of the PC-Tools Deluxe disk 
utility package. The full Power Pak is now being 
shipped with all Toshiba portables, Mitsubishi 
286 & 386 computers, and Dell Computers with 
the Enhanced DOS 4.0 package. 



CP/M 



PC-File 80 
Version 9.1 

Software review by Willie Lockeretz 

KaftorWare Corporation 
PO Box 1674 
Chicago, IL 60690 
$49.95 

PC File 80, Version 9.1, was released in late 
1987 as a commercially-distributed update of a 
CP/M database manager that was already well- 
known in several shareware versions for both 
CP/M and MS-DOS (the most recent of the lat- 
ter being PC-File III, Release 4.0). Its data files 
are interchangeable with its MS-DOS counter- 
part, which may be of interest to those who need 
to switch data between the two 
systems. All you would need is a 
format-converting utility, such as 
Uniform or DosDisk. 

If, however, your database use 
is confined to CP/M, then PC- 
File 80 must prove itself better 
than the two database programs 
bundled with CP/M Kaypros at 
one time or another: Perfect 
Filer and DataStar/ReportStar. 
Presumably, you either already 
have these, or can easily get 
them. In this review I will con- 
centrate on how PC-File 80 
stacks up against these tried-but- 
not-necessarily-true stalwarts, to 
help you decide whether the one 
that costs is worth more than the 
ones that came free. 

The accompanying table 
shows the most important fea- 
tures to consider in choosing a 
database management program. 



(A technical note on the table, for those of you 
who want to estimate PC-File 80's performance 
with your own databases. The data on timing 
and disk space are for a 1300 record mailing list 
with name, address, some status fields, and a 65 
character comment line. Each record has 17 
fields, with a maximum length of 232 characters 
total, and an average of 86 characters of actual 
data. Times are for a Kaypro 4-84, with disks in 
Advent TurboRom format.) 

Of the three, PC-File 80 stands out in three 
respects. Its strongest point is that it is easiest to 
learn, and therefore the best for a beginner. It 
also is the most versatile in exchanging data with 
other programs. Third, it allows you to browse 
through many records at once, and offers the 
greatest flexibility in finding records when you 
only have incomplete information. For example, 
suppose you are trying to recall somewhat who 
might have called herself either Liz or Elizabeth. 











Basic Features of Three CP/M Database Managers. 


Maximum field length 


PC-File 80 


DataStar 


Perfect Filer 


X 65 


255 


79 


Maximum fields per record 


40 


245 


70 


Maximum record length 


253 


very large 
(depends on 
form layout) 


1024 minus 
number of 
fields 


Data entry form design 


fixed: 
2 columns 


free; can use 
more than one 
screen 


free; must 
fit onto 
one screen 


Able to link data files? 


No 


Yes 


No 


Disk space to store 
sample data base (K 


342 


148 


188 


Time to retrieve record 
by 4 char, key (sec.) 


26 


3 


3 

i 


Time to retrieve last rec. 
in file, looking for exact 
match on name field (sec 


72 
•) 


38 


Not possible 






(Table continues on next page) 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 15 



PC-File 80 may be able to help you (if you have 
time on your hands -- see below), whereas if you 
relied on Perfect Filer or DataStar, forget it pal. 
These conveniences are nice, but to capitalize 
on them you must be prepared to make some 
serious sacrifices. PC-File 80 is stingiest in how 
much data it allows you to store in each record. 
Second, it is by far the slowest of the three in 
retrieving records or in sorting the file before 
you write a report. Third, it does not permit you 
to generate personalized letters (except if you 
are willing to put each variable length field, such 
as a name, at the end of the line and allow lots of 
extra room for occasional long names, in the 
manner of junk mail circa 1965.) Creating free- 
form reports, such as invoices, is much more 
tedious with PC-File 80. Also, it is the most 
profligate of the three in its use of disk space, 
which could be a problem if you have a large 
database or are using single-sided disks. (Part 
of its poor showing in the table comes from the 
65 character comment field; unlike the other 
two programs, PC-File 80 allocates the maxi- 



Basic Features of Three CP/M Database Managers. 



PC-File 80 



DataStar 



Perfect Filer 



"Browse" mode to view 
multiple records at once 

Check for unique 
value of key field? 

Import/export data 
to/from other formats? 



First 69 charac- None 
ters of 20 recs. 

No Yes 



ASCIIcomma ASCII comma 

separated or fixed separated; 



None 



No 



length; DIF 



Arithmetic capabilities 
in reports 

Able to make formatted 
personalized letters? 



Ease/Convenience 
Getting started 
Creating column 

format reports 
Creating free-form 

reports or labels 



Column totals; 
computed fields 

No 



Good 
Fair 

Poor 



fixed length 
ASCII output 
by writing 
report to disk 

Highly 
flexible 

Requires 
Mail Merge/ 
WordStar 



Poor 
Fair 

Fair 



Public domain 
utility for 
exporting as 
fixed length 
ASCII 



None 



Yes 






Fair/Good 
Poor 

Good 



mum space that could possibly needed for every 
field in every record, including the full 65 charac- 
ters for the comment field, even though this field 
is empty most of the time. See my article in the 
June- July 1987 Kugel for a comparison of dif- 
ferent database storage methods.) And even if 
you have adequate storage, its slowness in sort- 
ing and retrieving argues for using it only with 



relatively small databases. Finally, its data entry 
screen is highly restricted, so that unlike with 
Perfect Filer or DataStar, you cannot, for ex- 
ample, put in extra text as cues or reminders for 
the person entering the data. 

In other comparisons, PC-File80 doesn't 
offer DataStar's ability to link more than one 
database through a common field, which can be 
very valuable for databases with complex struc- 
tures. Its mathematical capability is more 
limited, and it doesn't allow you to check for 
duplicate records. Also, you must sort the data 
again (a slow process!) if you have added or 
deleted records since the last sort, whereas with 
DataStar this is necessary only if you decide to 
change the sort order. One advantage not 
shown in the table is that it is much easier to 
redesign the database after data have been 
entered, a cumbersome process in DataStar un- 
less you only want to change the length of a field 
or add a field at the end. 

Compared to Perfect Filer, PC-Filer 80 is par- 
ticularly advantageous for searching for records 
meeting a variety of criteria, a fea- 
ture that PF totally lacks. Also, it 
offers reasonably powerful mathe- 
matical capabilities, compared to 
none for PF. However, it is much 
less convenient for generating 
several-across mailing labels, a task 
that PF does particularly easily. 

In summary, none of these three 
programs is clearly preferable in all 
respects. PC-File 80 does have 
some appealing features, but if you 
already are conversant with either 
Perfect Filer or DataStar, you 
probably have little reason to spend 
any cash or to learn yet another 
program. This would certainly be 
true if the record size you plan to 
use exceeds the serious limits I've 
shown in the table, or if your 
database is so big that the time 
needed for sorting it or retrieving 
records will be more than you are 
willing to put up with. But if these 
constraints won't create problems 
for you, and if you are new to 
database managers and don't have 
the time or inclination to plunge into something 
more complicated, PC-File 80 could be a good 
way to start. 

Willie Lockeretz is an ex-New Yorker who thinks 
that Dahchista sounds like Dahchista. 



Page 16 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



WS 5, the HP 
LaserJet II, and 
Printing an Envelope 

by Yale Goldman 

You own a fancy word-processor, an expen- 
sive printer, but you can still type an envelope 
with your old typewriter easier than you can 
with the fancy word-processor. But when you 
proof your work, the address on the letter and 
the address on the envelope do not quite match. 
Right? Perhaps. Here's a quick way of produc- 
ing envelopes with a the Hewlett Packard Laser- 
Jet II using WordStar version 5. 

I have a file, called ENV, in every word 
processing sub-directory that looks like this: 

.pror=l 

.mt2.6" 

.pl9.00" 

.po1.8 H 

.rm80 

Yale Goldman 

10 Elinor Road 

Newton, MA 02161-1833 

.Im35 



(8 lines or returns) 



..address on next line ( A end) - return at end of address 

(file ends here because of the return at the 
end of the previous line) 

After I have finished writing a letter, I block 
WRITE ( ~ KW) the name and address I want 
on the envelope into its own file. If I were writ- 
ing a letter to John Goldie, I would write the 
block 

John Goldie 
158 Hollett Street 
Scituate, MA 02066 

to the file goldicenv. 

If a copy of the letter were being sent to 
Karen Rockow, I would also write her address 
to the file rockow.env. This system will work 
only if the block you wrote to file ended with a 
return (or if you added a return after the ad- 
dress in the new .env files). 

I prepare the envelope files for printing by 
entering them in the "document" mode (FD 
goldie.env). With the cursor at the beginning of 
the file, I block READ ( ~ KR) the .env file. 
With the cursor still at the beginning of the 



goldicenv file, I format the envelope file with a 
* QU and I am ready to print. 

Before I print, I insert the narrow end of an 
envelope into the center of the manual feed slot 
of the printer - the flap to the left and under- 
neath - and move the paper guides to the center 
so they gently embrace the envelope. Now I tell 
the program to prepare to print the goldie.env 
file ( * KPP) and print (F10). 

Voila, I have an envelope with the same ad- 
dress as is on the letter. And the DOS com- 
mand del *.env removes all the envelope files 
from the sub-directory. 



Classified Adverts 

For Sale 

■ 

Kaypro II computer; perfect condition. All 
software and manuals included. $175. Call 
Maryanne (617) 876-1737 

For Sale 

Microsoft Excel still in the blister for 
IBM/compatible computers. $275 or best 
offer. Call Michael (617) 986-7315 evenings. 

For Sale 

Kaypro New 2 Excellent, like-new condition. 
It is portable, perfect for writers, and cheaper 
than a typewriter. CP/M, 64K, two double- 
sided drives, graphics, software, manuals (Per- 
fect Writer, dBase II, WordStar, games, and 
other), modem, and cables. $300. Star Gemini 
10-X printer $95. Call (617) 484-3785. 

For Sale 

Kaypro 2. Two single-sided, double-density 
drives. WordStar and CP/M. $200 or best 
offer. Call Franklin Davis (617) 494-0079. 

For Sale ) 

Morrow Designs MD3 (64K, two floppy 
drives), with monochrome monitor. Excellent 
condition. Software included: CP/M 2.2, 
WordStar Professional, programming lan- 
guages, data base, spreadsheet, and utilities, 
Computer table, cables, and dust covers, too 
$400. Gary Goldner (617) 327-9077. 

For Sale 

(Or if that's silly, for donation to a worthy 
cause.) One Osborne (gray) in good working 
order (last time I tried it), with 80-character 
board, all original software, Turbo Pascal, 
manuals. Also 300 baud acoustic coupler 
modem. Please take these classics out of a 
much neede closet. Call Barry (617) 332-5758 
or write 124 Otis St., Newtonville, MA 02160. 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 17 



The New BBS, continued from page 1 

option is generally indicated in the prompt. To 
accept it, just press the return key. 

You will next see a welcome message fol- 
lowed by a login request, asking for your first 
name, then last name, and then password. You 
can speed up the process by entering all the 
commands on a single line separated by spaces 
or semicolons. As a new user, you have no 
password on the system, so you should enter just 
your first and last names. Later, after you are a 
registered user, you can include your password 
as well on the same line. The system always ac- 
cepts a group of related commands on the same 
line, but don't forget to separate them with 
spaces or semicolons. 

Registering 

Since you are a new user, the system will not 
find your name in its user file, and it will display 
the message, <firstname > <lastname> not 
found in USER'S file. (R) to re-enter your name 
or (C) to continue logon as a new user? As a first- 
time caller, you should enter C, followed as 
usual by a carriage return. 

You will now see a special message for new 
users that tells you about the registration 
process. BCS members get more privileges on 
the system (longer daily access and file 
download limits), so have your BCS member- 
ship number handy. 

I won't take you through all the questions 
here; most are straightforward enough. You will 
be asked to supply a password and to enter it a 
second time for verification. For the city and 
state from which you are calling (or where you 
live), please use the format CITY, ST, where ST 
is the two-letter state code for the US. Include 
the country if calling from outside the US. 
Home and work numbers should be entered as 
###-###-#### (with the area code). Final- 
ly, enter your BCS number or if you are not a 
BCS member. That's it. Your registration infor- 
mation will be saved. 

The news bulletin appears next. It generally 
provides information about our next group meet- 
ing. If you call more than once in the same day, 
you will only see this file on the first call. 

The next prompt asks if you want to scan the 
message base for messages that were posted 
since your last call. As a new caller, you probab- 
ly won't have any messages waiting for you, so 
type N and press the return key to skip this and 
save a little time. If you become a regular con- 
tributor to the message traffic, you will probably 
want to accept the default "yes" answer. 



This is probably the time to note a few useful 
commands: 

Ctrl-K or Ctrl-X cancel the current output 

Ctrl-S suspends output until you press 
another key 

You rarely need Ctrl-S because output is nor- 
mally paged. At any More prompt, or when you 
issue the original command that generates the 
output, type the subcommand NS and press the 
return key for non-stop operation. 

The system next displays your configuration 
information. The PCBoard BBS software that 
we are using can support numerous inde- 
pendent message areas. The first line in the 
status display indicates which areas you are 
registered for, while the second line shows 
which areas will be included in certain scans for 
all of your mail. We presently have seven active 
areas. The main area (designated variously by 
the number or the letter "M") is the one you 
will be in initially on each call and the one most 
people will use most often. Other areas are: 

(1) CPM 

(2) DOS 

(3) KAYPRO 

(4) OSBORNE 

(9) FOR_SALE 

(10) ACTIVISTS. 

All but the last are open to the general 
public, and, as you will see from the status dis- 
play, you are automatically registered for all con- 
ferences through number 9. You can change 
this and other user information using the W 
(write) command from the main menu; it will 
take you through a process very much like the 
one for initial registration. 

Finally, the main menu appears. At some 
point we may streamline this menu, but, at the 
time I am composing this article, the menu lists 
essentially all the available commands. I recom- 
mend that you capture this display and the help 
display discussed later and print a copy on your 
printer. Then you should enter the X (expert) 
command (even if you don't feel exactly like an 
expert yet) to turn off the automatic display of 
the whole menu, a time-consuming process that 
soon becomes an annoyance. You can type X 
again at any time to retore the menu. 

Notice that the prompt offers you the choice 
of H or ? for Help. By all means, take ad- 
vantage of this feature. In fact, as I suggested 
above, you should capture the output on your 
printer and keep it nearby for ready reference. 
To avoid the More prompts and imbedded back- 
space characters, which really mess up a prin- 
tout, enter the command as H NS or H;NS to 
get a non-stop help display. 






Page 18 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel 



As a new user, you really should just experi- 
ment with the commands. You cannot hurt the 
system (or, if you can, that is MY fault and MY 
problem, not yours, so don't worry about it). If 
things get hopelessly messed up, just hang up 
the phone and call back! However, before you 
take such drastic measures: 

(1) try Ctrl-X or Ctrl-K if output is streaming 
by 

(2) read the prompt carefully, if there is one 

(3) enter the response N for "no" at a prompt 
for a function you want to halt. 

The latter command is an important one to 
remember with PCBoard. Since no other BBS 
software that I know of uses N as the escape 
command, this PCBoard command causes 
trouble for many new callers. 

One of the most common difficulties new 
users have is getting stuck at a subcommand 
prompt. Most often, this occurs while attempt- 
ing to read messages. There are three command 
levels: 

(1) the main menu command 

(2) the message reading command 

(3) the end-of-message command. 

Each has its own set of responses; use the H or 
H NS commands for more information. 

Briefly, the message reading command 
prompt allows you to specify a message number 
to read, a direction to scan, or a thread of mes- 
sage replies to follow forward or backward. In 
addition, you can locate messages you have sent 
or that are addressed to you, and so on. The 
end-of-message prompt allows you to reply to 
the message you just read or to perform some 
other more advanced editing functions. Many 
of the options under the three menu levels are 
the same, but some are different; this can be con- 
fusing for a while. To get back to the main 
menu prompt may require entering N twice. 

Open Sesame 

Before I bring this installment to a close, I'd 
like to talk a bit about DOORs, a very powerful 
way of extending the capabilities of the basic 
PCBoard system. Essentially, DOORs are exter- 
nal programs that run and then return to 
PCBoard. Type DOOR or OPEN and press the 
return key to display a menu of available doors. 
The reason I want to bring up this seemingly ad- 
vanced subject right at the beginning is that you 
will want to begin to use the ProDoor door very 
early. 

ProDoor is an advanced version of PCBoard. 
Oddly enough, the advanced features of Pro- 
Door make it much EASIER to use than 
PCBoard itself. It uses some "artificial intel- 
ligence" to supply as a default the command you 



are most likely to want next. For those with MS- 
DOS computers or 

telecommunications programs that allow 
VT100 emulation (or, of course, with an actual 
VT100 terminal!) you can enter messages using 
a full-screen, 

WordStar-like editor. This is by far the nicest 
message-entry system I have ever seen on a 
BBS. You can even use Ctrl-B to reformat the 
paragraphs in a message! As with PCBoard, 
when in ProDoor you should capture and print 
the help information. 

Next time, I will present some more detailed 
information about the board's operation, 
probably covering file transfer procedures. In 
the meantime, I hope you will call up and have 
fun. If you have any questions, please do not 
hesitate to post them in a message. But please 
do not address general questions to the sysop; 
by using the default "ALL" addressee, all other 
users, and not just the sysop, can help supply the 
answers. 

Director's Letter, continued from page 1 

the issue (using Ventura, a powerful but also 
complex and quirky program), then prints it out 
on a (borrowed) laser printer, all virtually un- 
aided. This first final version must then be 
proof-read, cleaned up and adjusted before it is 
finally delivered to the BCS for forwarding to 
the printer and, thence, to the post office for 
mailing. 

John gets some help along the way from 
various people (especially in the editing 
process), but it is he who does more than 90% 
of the work. In addition to everything else, he 
also solicits the ads and makes sure that they're 
in on time and that the copy is correct. 

All this is do-able when things are going 
smoothly in an editor's life. But cumulatively it 
represents a large sacrifice of time taken away 
from income-producing work, and from family 
life. So when things are going a bit rockily, the 
newsletter slides easily to the bottom of the 
priorities list. And, when this happens, it's 
natural for the editor to become more crazy 
than normal; of course, this only results in more 
delay. 

Our excellent newsletter is probably the 
single most important product that this userg 
roup produces. It is an essential communicatins 
link among all our members, number one, which 
means that whenever an issues is long delayed, 
the link is broken. Second, the Kugel is really 
the only tangible benefit of BCS membership for 
hundreds of Boskug members who live too far 
away from Boston to attend our or other BCS 



The Boston Kugel 



Spring 1989 



Page 19 



meetings. And, for our many members who use 
CP/M computers, it is an essential lifeline - 
often the only one - of support. For them, the 
KugeVs absence is not merely an inconvenience, 
it is a deprivation. 

What is to be done? We need help from our 
members. The greatest present need is for 
someone to solicit ads from manufacturers of 
software, hardware and peripherals. We do not 
get enough financial support from the BCS to 
pay for the expense of publishing the Kugel. In 
order to break even, we need at least 2 pages of 
ads per issue. The task is not a difficult one. It 
can be done by one person living anywhere in 
the U.S, We can furnish him or her lists of 
potential advertisers, and with ideas. We think 
there are many likely advertisers because the 
Kugel is one of the few remaining ways by which 
peripheral and software manufacturers can 
reach the CP/M market. (We have several 
hundred CP/M users.) All we need is somebody 
wiling to take on the responsibility for a year. It 
means sending out some letters along with 
sample copies, then making a few phone calls. 

Interested? Here's a way you can contribute 
to a group whose services you value. Give me a 
call at 617-965-6343, or drop me a note (27 
Howland Rd., W. Newton, MA 02165). 

Further help needed: Someone in Boston 
area or on the South Shore (where John lives) 
who can help with production. Familiarity with 
Ventura on an IBM is essential. Ideally, he or 
she should also have access to a laser printer 
hooked up to an IBM with a hard disk for print- 
ing it out. Anyone with this ability should call 
me or John Goldie (617-545-0731). 

Meanwhile, we pledge to do our best to get 
the Kugel back on track, even if it means smaller 
issues for a while. 

"ZITEL"??? (What's in a name?) 

BOSKUG IS IN URGENT NEED OF A 
NEW NAME. Why? Because the old one no 
longer describes who we are. As a result, many 



people who run DOS computers and join BCS, 
people who might well enjoy our group, fail to 
check us off because they don't know about us. 

"BOSKUG" means "Boston Kaypro Users 
Group," but we aren't really Kaypro any more; 
moreover, most people associate the name with 
the old CP/M machines Kaypro originally made. 
What we need is a name that clearly embraces 
both operating systems and, preferably, one 
which also expresses the laid-back, informal 
character of our membership. 

One member has suggested "ZITEL, the 
CP/MS-DOS Users Group." It's a made-up 
word combining Zilog (maker of the Z-80 CP/M 
chip) and Intel, maker of the 8086, 80286 and 
80386 chips inside DOS machines. Not bad, we 
think, though a bit more machine-like in tone 
than we'd like for a group whose hallmark is its 
human personality. 

What do you think, loyal members? We need 
a new name right away, before the BCS changes 
its membership application forms for another 
year. If you have any ideas, or want to express 
an opinion, either write to me or leave me a mes- 
sage on our bulletin board. 

Battersby's Drop-in SIG 

Russ Battersby, a longtime member, feels 
that we don't do enough for beginners arid 
novice users at our meetings. Therefore, he has 
volunteered to lead a "drop-in" SIG (special in- 
terest group) before each monthly meeting, at 
which anyone can ask questions or ask for help 
on any computing subject and get some help. It 
began with the March meeting and promises to 
become popular. If you're interested, just show 
up around 6:30 at Ottoson and look for Russ, an 
enthusiastic man with a large smile, who will 
probably already have a cluster of chairs in a 
corner. MS-DOS and CP/M combined. Here's 
an unusual chance to get help on the most 
elementary subjects without feeling embarrassed 
about taking up other people's time. 




OOIhe 

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Page 20 



Spring 1989 



The Boston Kugel